Saturday, March 20, 2010

Grand Entries

Recently in Georgetown I spotted this elegant entry. I love the stone stair and curved railing with integrated lamp posts. I might paint the door a brighter contrasting color, but this is conservative Georgetown afterall!
I hope everyone has a great weekend. Remember, design is in the details!

Friday, March 19, 2010

China in DC

There is a charming 1920s Chinese building in DC that always seems to draw my attention at L and 11th street.
Formerly the Chinese Community Church building, it now lies vacant and is ripe for development, don't you think? I wonder what the interior is like...
I love the turquoise and red color scheme and the iron light fixtures. And who can't help but notice the clay tile roof and brackets! The patina on the facade is charming, but I know people in the neighborhood think this wear is just a sign of neglect. I just worry that a developer will get ahold of the building and take away every last ounce of originality and charm!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Inside ArchitectDesign

Yesterday Catherine from The Shiny Pebble tagged me in her Bag tagging post. I feel so guilty that over the past 3 years (and change!) I have been tagged quite a bit and have never played along; Bad blogger! I thought it might be interesting to compare my workbag to a woman's purse as all of the other nominees were ladies. However -my messenger bag is basically a 'manbag' as you can see - so purselike it's embarrassing! Lets dig through this mess, shall we? Don't judge!
-Reading materials for the bus - check! Vanity Fair and Veranda today.
-Sketchpad (courtesy of Little Augury) and drawing pens.
-Ipod, flashdrive and camera (obviously not pictured) with associated cords
-Wallet and keys. Yes -my keychain is a measuring tape, I am an architect after all!
-Library card, work access card, extra business and blogging cards and a random coupon.
-2 burts bees chapsticks (I'm addicted to these but still not sure why I have 2), powder paper (to 'clean' my face if i'm going somewhere after work), gum, random old allergy medication tablets, a mint and some hand lotion stolen from a hotel (don't make fun -I get VERY dry skin in the winter - ouch!).
-Ordinarily I carry lunch and a snack to work and papers and drawing sets home as needed. Neither of these were in my bag at the time so they're not pictured!
The bag is a hard canvas messenger bag with leather trim by Jack Georges which I love and always get compliments on! Simple, practical but still attractive; I've been using it for about 3 years now. Thanks Catherine for thinking of me! On with our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The real Brideshead

Have you read this month's Vanity Fair (they have a great website btw!)? Featured is a book called 'Mad World: Evelyn Waugh and the Secrets of Brideshead' by Paula Byrne and I can't wait to read it. As most of us know, Brideshead Revisited was highly autobiographical for Waugh and this book digs into the details. I can't wait to read it!
I had to include this photo of Waugh from his wedding to Laura Herbert as it was so charming. How elegant is Laura - so wispily pretty and that dress is very modern!
You may recognize Madresfield Court, the real Brideshead, at the top of this post as well as the stairhall above, as it has been used in numerous masterpiece theater mystery episodes. I love this room! Cozy yet grand, mixing the best of the antique with the new -photographs and portraits, electric light and fireplace. During World War II, the house was planned as a place of evacuation for the Royal family.Here is Hugh Lygon, the 'real' Sebastian -quite dashing in his double breasted suit and slicked back hair- but not quite as handsome perhaps as Anthony Andrews who played the part in Brideshead revisited from 1981.
Above is Lord Beauchamp, the inspiration for Lord Marchmain, who was in exile from England like in the book, but for much more scandalous reasons! The real story behind this family was even more extraordinary than depicted by Waugh in Brideshead, hopefully this new book is a good read. I'll let you know!

See great 3-d tours of Madresfield HERE

All images from Vanity Fair

Monday, March 15, 2010

Making a grand entrance

UPDATE: The architects were Porter, Lochie and Chatelain, and the entrance is by John Joseph Earley an amazing local architect and concrete artisan. Thanks to Neil in Australia for this information!!Driving up 16th street this weekend in tight traffic, I had time to appreciate the beautiful buildings which line the road which ends at the south with the White House. One of these many buildings was the Scottish Rite Temple of DC. Less renowned than their House of the temple by the famous John Russell Pope just down the street, I think this building also merits some attention. The copper and enamel entablature over the front door is really extraordinary, making it one of the most colorful buildings here in the district. I think congratulations are in order for keeping palm trees alive through our harsh winter or in this climate at all for that matter. If anyone has any information about this building, I would love to know more about the artist who created this doorway.